The gage R&R study (repeatability and reproducibility) is a powerful technique for analyzing certain aspects of your business, especially if you want to get a deeper insight into the way certain systems are connected behind the scenes. In the end, if you conducted the study correctly, you should have a pretty good idea of the way your measuring systems work, and whether they’re capable of recognizing the important differences between certain parameters in the units they’re tracking.
In order to conduct a gage R&R study effectively, you have to make sure that the parameters you’re measuring are kept as constant as possible for the duration of the study, and that there is no random variance introduced from external factors either.
This is perhaps the most challenging part of the process, and once you’ve overcome that hurdle, you should be able to get the study done without any significant issues.
Keeping Variance to a Minimum
You’re trying to determine how well a measuring system handles its task, especially when it comes to certain degrees of variance between the units being measured. This means that you will need to take some baseline measurements to compare against, and study the machine’s output at each stage.
Naturally, you’ll want to ensure that nothing is changed outside of your control while conducting the study. This can include a machine with significant variance in its output, other measuring tools interfering with the gage R&R study, as well as operators introducing variance into the system.
This makes it important to get everyone on board when conducting the study, rather than only involving top-level leaders. While you might think that a gage R&R study is only relevant to the ones leading the company, it’s still important to warn those below to prevent them from making mistakes that can affect the variance of the process.
Consolidating Different Measurement Systems
Another important factor to consider is what your approach should be in case there are several different measurement systems in place and you need to make sure that the performance of all is measured accordingly. The situation will be different depending on whether you have one, two or more different systems that have to be tested simultaneously, and you may even need to conduct more than one study instead of capturing all data in one run.
The important thing here is to not rush, and remember that you’re trying to collect data from different sources that can still be compiled into one common set. If you need more time to gather certain data points, do things properly. Otherwise, you may find yourself repeating the study anyway, but only because you have to start from scratch and haven’t managed to gain any useful information from your last run.
This is more common than you might think, and it’s a frequently occurring problem for some companies, especially ones where the leadership is not familiar with conducting a gage R&R study. Once you’ve built up some experience and intuition about this, you should find the process to be much easier than it initially seems.
The way you run a gage R&R study on your business can have a significant impact on your future performance on the market. There are many different factors that can impact how your study goes, and it’s important to be aware of changes that you’ll have to make in case there are multiple measurement systems that have to be consolidated. Avoiding variance during the testing itself – or at least keeping it to a minimum – is also a good idea if you don’t want to have to repeat the whole process later on due to invalid data.